Standing with Jesus at the Judgment

Relatively few Americans give very little thought to the Judgment, which is a cornerstone of Christianity. Without the Judgment Day there was no need for the sacrifice of Christ on the cruel cross of Calvary. Without Gehenna or Hell, there would be no need for salvation from the consequence of sin, as revealed in the Gospel of Christ.

We have seemingly accepted the premise that God wants us to be happy no matter what kind of sins we commit or what atrocity of which we might be guilty. It is true that Jesus pointed out that His first coming was not to judge the world, but to save the world (John 12:47). The question that should come to mind is, "To save the world from what?" The normal answer would be from the consequence of God's wrath.

John the Baptist did point out that Jesus the Christ would baptize them with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:10-12). However, when Jesus spoke of His second coming (Matthew 25:31-46), He pointed out the saints and sinners shall be separated as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. To the faithful saints, He will say, "Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:" (verse 34). Jesus summary was that the lost "shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal" (verse 46).

When the gentiles (non-Jews) were converted to Christianity Peter pointed out to Cornelius and his house that (1) they had eaten and drank with Him after His resurrection; (2) that He was ordained of God to be the Judge of the quick and the dead; and (3) that whosoever believed in Christ would receive remission of sin (Acts 10:39-43). This truth, concerning Christ being our judge in the final Judgment Day, is echoed by the apostle Paul at Athens (Acts 17:22-31). Paul points out to this gentile audience that (1) the times of ignorance concerning God and His will is over; (2) God now commands all men, every where to repent; (3) because God has appointed a day in the which He will judge the world in righteousness; and that (4) the assurance of this fact is that God raised Christ from the dead.

John the Apostle of Love, graphically describes the judgment scene (Revelation 20:11-21:8). The dead, small and great, stand before God and the dead are judged by the things written in the books according to their works (20:11-12). Those not found written in the Book of Life are cast into the lake of fire (20:15). In the next chapter (21:8), John states that the fearful, unbelieving, abominable, murder, whoremongers, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the Lake of Fire, which is the second death. Where will you stand in the Judgment?

Dale I. Royal, Elk City, OK